Sunday, July 19, 2009

"Healthy" Camp Cobbler With Double Acting Alka Seltzer

Imagine this: While vacationing with a bunch of friends, you've snagged a bunch of cherries from a ripe cherry tree. You really want to show-off by whipping up an awesome cherry cobbler on the fly. You've got just the recipe in mind, but you soon realize your friend's cabin does not stock baking powder? Is this the end of your grandstanding dreams?

If you say yes, turn to page 5, where you will die a gruesome death.

If you say no, continue to read on.

Congratulations, you said "no", this isn't the end to your grandstanding dreams. You will live on to be the obnoxious braggart that you are. But first, you need to put your money where your mouth is and figure out a way of this no-baking-powder-pickle. Think about what you can use instead. What does baking powder do for the recipe and what else might create the same effect.

Okay, you know baking powder reacts while baking, creating bubbles which lighten baked goods and make then fluffy. Baking soda can be mixed with vinegar (similar to the volcano science fair project) for the same results.

Sorry, you don't have baking soda either, but thinking on this reminded you of the packets of alka seltzer you always carry in your bag to counteract your nightly binge drinking.

Cobbler with alka seltzer? This is brilliant you think! What a way to cure all your aches and pains. What a tasty treatment. Practice your swagger; its time to self medicate while baking!

crushed alka seltzer to substitute for baking powder.

Here's the recipe I came up with when faced with the exact same situation last weekend at my friend's cabin. We all ate it, and many people burped to show their appreciation and gratitude!

Cherry Camp Cobbler
in a 9" x 12" pan, 16 - 20 servings

  • 2-3 c. bing cherries, pitted
  • 1 c. butter, melted
  • 2 c. flour
  • 3 c. sugar
  • 2 c. milk
  • 3 packets of alka selter (6 tablets)
  • 9" x 12" baking dish

pitting the cherries by pulling the stems.
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Rinse cherries and pit them. To pit these, fresh from the orchard, I was able to extract the pit by pulling the stem while squeezing the cherry. The pit stayed attached to the stem and I could basically pull the cherry off the pit.

  3. In a sauce pan, place the cherrys with 1 cup of sugar and bring to a boil. Boil for a couple of minutes and then remove from heat. Drain cherries and reserve Bing cherries are very tart so we need to precook them with a bit of sugar to infuse some sweetness into the fruit. This will also help cook some of the juice out of the fruit so the cobbler won't be too soupy.

  4. Drain cherries, reserving 1/4 c. of juice. Set aside cherries and 1/4 c. juice. Use the rest of the juice to make a kick-ass old fashioned. (although it may appear to be, this drink is not optional.)

  5. Melt the butter on the stove top or in a microwave if you have one. Pour melted butter into the bottom of your 9"x12" baking dish or pan.

  6. Crush alka seltzer tablets in a bowl or cup until they are a fine powder, set aside.

  7. Measure all your dry ingredients: Mix dry ingredients together including the crushed alka seltzer. Mix your milk and reserved 1/4 c. cherry juice. Have your cherries in a bowl along with all your other mixed ingredients ready to go along with your baking dish with the melted butter. Because we're using alka seltzer instead of baking powder, its going to react immediately so we want to mix it at the last possible minute and pop it into the stove as soon as possible.

  8. Quickly assemble your cobbler: Mix the dry and wet ingredients and pour them into the pan with the butter. Spoon the cherries into the batter. Try to distrubute evenly.

  9. Bake for 30-45 minutes or until toothpic/knife can be poked into cobbler and come out clean.

A delicioulsy fluffy cobbler ready to eat.

This cobbler recipe is always delicious but the addition of the alka seltzer only makes it better! I would say this qualifies as a healthy snack. Though its definitely not low-fat, it does make you feel way better after eating (it has aspirin in it)!

**Sorry the pictures are not as good as usual, they were taken by Ira's iPhone while we were on vacation.


Carli said...

GENIUS! I love to hear inventive, make-due solutions such as this. I have sour cherry trees right outside my kitchen door- there's nothin' better than sour cherries cold out of the refrigerator with a bit of sugar on a hot Tennessee afternoon! (Of course, we make lots of cobbler too)!
Sounds like you love food as much as me...not gonna let any lack of ingredients stop you!! This reminds me of my mom, who can do ANYTHING with food (I swear she could make a cherry cobbler without cherries). She has even caught her own yeast out of the air to make bread! Anyways, you may like my blog- specifically the first post (from back on June 15)which talks about this exact thing. Check it out- it's

Thanks for your blog!

Carli said...

Hey Andrea- I got your post on my blog. Thanks for checking it out.

Sorry- I now realize that my last comment was misleading. I don't have a post about my mom catching the yeast out of the air. (I was referring to my first post in which I describe her insane cooking abilities). BUT....I should write about that. I'll get to it soon. She's amazing!

Allright- thanks again. I'll keep watchin' Forkable!

Meg Gustafson said...

as it was my cabin w/o the baking soda i'd just like to say- it tasted AMAZING. i've been telling everyone about your improvising genius, andrea!

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